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Club Respond To Mail On Sunday Claims

Aston Villa have released a statement concerning what they describe as an 'inaccurate, misleading and distorted' article from the Mail On Sunday.

The statement can be read in full by Clicking Here.

In short for those who aren't aware of the article, it claims some Villa players removed the 'Kick It Out' shirts 'early' and threw them to the ground in 'disgust' during the pre match warmups at Fulham.

However:

'As is usual practice the players were split into two groups during that warm up to play possession football; in order to be distinguishable one group removed their t-shirts. The players who removed their t-shirts for this reason were Brett Holman, Joe Bennett, Fabian Delph, Darren Bent and Nathan Baker. This was not a protest. There was no controversy.

'No player threw their shirt to the ground 'in disgust'.

'Aston Villa are particularly disappointed with this irresponsible journalism, given that the journalist in question had the full facts of the matter at his disposal before this article went to press: he even asked a question regarding this issue at Saturday's post match press conference.

'His question and the manager's response are below -

'Mail on Sunday: Can you confirm they meant no disrespect to the Kick It Out campaign?

'Paul Lambert: No, not at all. We play a possession thing and that will only have been what that was…..There was no disrespect to it whatsoever. We train and then five lads wear one shirt and five wear another……. They backed it, the football club backs it to the hilt.


'Despite this, the Mail on Sunday proceeded to publish an article which is demonstrably untrue.'

Villa also prove their commitment to the cause by pointing out that we became the second club to achieve the highest level of the 'Kick It Out Equality Standard', which the club is obviously proud of.

They are also taking this matter very seriously and:

'The club have written to the Mail on Sunday today, requesting that the article be corrected and an apology published.

'We have also suggested that the Mail on Sunday makes a donation to Kick It Out to help them continue with the excellent work they do.

'Finally, we have suggested to the Mail on Sunday that they may wish to highlight - in next Sunday's edition - some of the positive events and activities that all Premier League clubs, including Aston Villa, are taking part in as part of Kick It Out's Weeks of Action (which take place between October 18 and 29).'

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The Journalist

Writer: Mike Field Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday October 21 2012

Time: 7:19PM

Your Comments

Typical story grabbing back stabbing journalism, how pathetic trying to make out our players don't support this 'kick it out' soem ofthe players who took there tops ff were cored so why would they be againt racism, they should sack that reporter imo just can not wait can they to keep sticking the boot in at VP, any or no reason they wait to pounce!
CLIVETHEVILLAN
The press tell lies shock horror. They are scum.
spurdon
Jeez, even the Sunday supplement discussed this today. Ridiculous stuff. Irresponsible reporting shocker!
The Fear
It's one thing being wrong if you don't have all the facts, but to have the facts and still lead with it - shoddy behaviour and shows what a pointless exercise Leveson and self regulation is.

Loved the tone of the response from the club though, some of the stuff they are coming out with lately is fantastic.
mike_field
The Mail is that scummy that I actually prefer any of the redtops. It's a vile paper, with vile staff and vile readers.
Sheriff Kimbo
Agree with MF. Love how Villa respond to affronts to our good name recently. Don't F'kin mess!!
Adam Deuce
I think it's unfair to say all the press are scum. But it is totally fair to describe the Mail as scum. They are the biggest enemy this country faces. What amazes me more is that there are reportedly 2 million idiots who buy their right wing sensationalist filth every day!!
jvilla
i've heard people refuse to even use the Mail as toilet paper 'shocker'.
leftfoot
No - they're not all scum. Just 90 percent are scum. The problem is - we don't know which 90 percent. Just to be safe, Darren Bent better disable his voicemail.
malacaxeta
who cares. Just play football. This whole thing has gone on for too long. I don't care about John Terry or Anton Ferdinand. Or what they did or didn't say. I care about watching football. Shup up about the whole damn thing. People are free to feel and say whatever they want in my opinion: whether it be stupid, intellectual, education, rubbish, racist or not. Just get on with it already.
los_angeles_villan
Poor journalism at it's pathetic best.....sad, very sad.
Pride of Lions
Seems like poor journalism to me and there is a lot of bile against the Mail on this thread. I wonder why it is the best selling, non red top paper in the Country? Sheriff Kimbo you say it has vile staff, do you include the Midland sports reporter Neil Moxley in that profound assessment? It seems slightly ironic that an inacurrate article on racism means that everybody who reads the paper is vile?
voiceoftheholte
The Forger's Gazette strikes again.
chocolate teapot
It's a bit ridiculous Players like Rio Ferdinand not wearing the T-shirts. Who exactly is he mad at? The Fa, the legal system? - Kick it Out are in essence a charity trying to prevent racism in the game. It would be like supporting Cancer research all your life and then because cancer killed your Mother, stop supporting it because you feel they aren't doing enough to cure cancer. Rio's actions will only alienate him and his supporters, and will do more harm than good. He should be clear in what he thinks needs to be done and work with the organisation not sulk and say nothing can be done so I’ll just pick a fight with the campaign that is trying eradicate Racism. The FA has banned both Suarez and Terry, does Rio feel they should have a life time ban for their actions? and if so maybe He himself should suffer the same fate for his abuse of Ashley Cole, which he then tried to cover up by saying it was an attack on his intelligence not his skin colour. I understand people’s frustrations and sensitivity on the matter, but everyone needs to stand together against racism. There needs to be a proper Debate maybe there should be zero Tolerance and any racial comment made regardless of racial intent or incitement should receive a life bans Terry Suarez and Rio and anyone who uses racial language.
macca1087
The slogan is as meaningless as 'Franky Says Relax', if displaying them is compulsory.
OnMeHeadFred
This is the least of our pur problems right now. Move on...
onlyteaminthemids
or just ban them from the football club
leelindsay
Sometimes you need to make a stand to create impact. The players who refused to wear the shirts have arguably raised the 'racism'issue more by not wearing the shirts than by actually wearing them. However they should have the minerals to come out and actually say what they mean by refusing to wear the shirts. All Ferdinand has to do, is actually say that he thinks the campaign is not working. When a player is found guilty by the FA of making racist and offensive comments, but keeps his job, capataincy and huge wages and receives just a 4 game ban then I think black player have every right to question the value of the campaign.
voiceoftheholte
AAAARRGGHHH. You can't look at anything football related without some NOB trying to get a PC racism related story about it these days. The newspapers have got to stop. Racism won't be eradicated as ignorance will always be there.
Villan444
 

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